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Love, Chocolate, and Beer

(Cactus Creek #1)

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  4,615 ratings  ·  463 reviews
Romance has met its most unlikely match-up…

Luke Bradford is a chocolatier on a mission. After moving his chocolate shop, and newly single life, to the quirky town of Cactus Creek, Luke wants nothing more than to devote all his energy into making his business a success—by taking the romance market by storm. But his grand plans get thrown for a loop when he locks horns with
Published January 31st 2014 (first published January 27th 2014)
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Average rating 3.86  · 
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SueBee★bring me an alpha!★
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FREE on Amazon US today (2/20/2015)

Romance has met its most unlikely match-up…

Luke Bradford is a chocolatier on a mission. After moving his chocolate shop, and newly single life, to the quirky town of Cactus Creek, Luke wants nothing more than to devote all his energy into making his business a success—by taking the romance market by storm. But his grand plans get thrown for a loop when he locks horns with the feisty beer-brewing beauty next door who calls his ‘romantic idealism’ a loa
Jodi Sue
Feb 08, 2014 rated it it was ok
It was really just too all over the place for me. I loved the prequel but too many plot lines killed the story for me.
Jun 12, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dnf
No, just no, to long boring dialogue after dialogue and nothing happening
No to guys who go out with you for months on dates and predates, and you tell them you want to hold off on sex and they agree and only take cold showers three times a day 😂😂😂
And then your first time is in an office but you come like a volcano while he does nothing 😂😂😂
Does the author know what orgasm is?
Left it unfinished
Mar 18, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2-stars, food-of-love
2.5 Stars

It started out alright but there were too many things going on, and although Luke and Dani competed with each other, it was basically an insta-love situation. I didn't really mind it that much but maybe it somehow caused me to feel impatient that I skimmed through probably 20% of the book. Ultimately, I think it just wasn't for me, and it was too all over the place.
This book was so boring to me! It rehashed the prequel novella, and by the time they got around to the competition part of the book, I really hated the on again, off again nature of their romance. They were playing too many games to fall in love, and the supporting characters really didn't hold my interest. It all felt so fake to me! I had to force myself to finish it, and while I could see the potential in the author's writing, I didn't really care enough about anything to continue with the ser ...more
Apr 07, 2019 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: freebie
🎁 FREE on Amazon today (4/7/2019)! 🎁
Jessica *The Lovely Books*
Violet Duke has outdone herself...again!

I LOVE her Nice Girl to Love series and the spin off as well. There is something pure and beautiful with her writing, it's phenomenal. She doesn't disappoint with a whole new cast of ever loving and fun characters.

In Love, Chocolate, and Beer, we follow Dani Dobson and Luke Bradford. Luke is a sexy man who makes chocolate and just moved in next door to the brewmaster, Dani. Do you see where this is going? Lol

If you read the novella, A Little Cobustible Ch
Mimi Lovell
May 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: series, small-town
Violet Duke can write them I tell ya. I have read her previous books, A Nice Girl to Love, and I was amazed at how she made me want her to end up with both guys. I NEVER feel that way with a love triangle. I am always decided from the start. So, I knew right away, that I was going to love Luke. So hard. And, I couldn't believe how much I fell for every character in this book. Every friend, and ex that made an appearance, I couldn't hate. As much as I wanted to. She was that good. And even Connor ...more
Feb 16, 2015 rated it it was ok
Sigh. I DNF'd this one at 72%. I'd give it 2.5 stars for some originality even though it couldn't keep my attention. I kept waiting to be really gripped, but it never got better than mild curiosity. This is the look across the room and sparks fly type of romance--which is hard for me to enjoy, but to make matters worse, the office manager and the rock guy do it too. Sigh. Dani is "nice" and everyone likes her fine and Luke is charming and everyone likes him fine--so of course they should be nice ...more
Susan W
Jan 28, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: z2015, free
It was just ok. The H was too sappy for my taste. It was a VERY slow read.
Siobhan Davis
May 11, 2016 marked it as to-read
Free on Amazon today!
Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews
Slick‘s review posted on Guilty Pleasures Book Reviews

Review copy provided for an honest review


I fell in love with Violet Duke when I was asked by Didi to read and review her A Nice Guy To Love series. She’s one of those writers who drew me in from the start with her quirky sense of humor, her flawed but loveable characters, and her full but entertaining plots. So, I was very excited when she announced the Cactus Creek series and if Love, Chocolate, and Beer is indicative of what this s
Alicia Kline
A cute story hidden under a ton of description

This could have been a cute concept. Just based on the description and the title itself, I expected a fun, light romantic read. And that was there, I'm sure, buried underneath the massive information dump.

At times, I felt like I was taking a master class on how to make beer, or chocolate, or both at once. I know nothing about the creation of either, but I feel as if the author did her research. The details certainly sounded official. And trust me, th
Elba Brosious
May 25, 2014 rated it it was ok
Not so much. I love to smutty chick lit romances but this didn't do it for. I can literally devour a book in a day but I couldn't get into the characters or the plot. I agree with the other reviews that it was all over the place,too many things going on too fast. The characters make out 5 seconds after meeting each other? Not sure how it has so many great reviews because there really are tons of other books in this genre that you can't put down. I forcibly read this book hoping it would get bett ...more
Not rating. I started reading the 'recommended' prequel(A Little Combustible Chemistry) included at the beginning and it made little or no sense. Frenetic action and characters and I gave up early on.
DNF. The first part was decent--the part that the author classified as a novella. But then it just became stupid. Who are these people, who do foolish things online for their business? Are they business owners, or middle schoolers?
Tonya Peterson
Jul 14, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Making mistakes come together

For yrs she blamed herself for her fathers illness. First the decisions she made after his first, then what her ex did that caused the second that killed him later on. But when she fell in love with the chocolate guy she realized that things that happend all happend for a reason and it came together like chocolate and beer does.
Marissa Chavez
Dec 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Dani and Luke were everything. They were times I wanted to scream at Dani but I knew they were more to the story so I waited. I'm so glad did. I loved getting to know both Dani and Luke.
Apr 16, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
LOVED this book!! Cute, sweet and SO funny. I can't wait to see what happens next in this crazy town!
Mar 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Firstly, I was impressed at the length of this book and it's prequel. It was nice to read a book over a number of nights instead of breezing through it in a few hours.
I thoroughly enjoyed the story, the introduction of the characters and how they meet (you can't read Love, Chocolate and Beer without the prequel, you'll do yourself an injustice if you try!) The characters growth throughout the book and their ups and downs make the journey so worthwhile. I also really like how Violet makes them w
Feb 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2014-top-25
Chocolate and beer throw down challenge and smack talk will have you laughing so hard that your sides will be aching. Dani is a feisty brewmaster and her tenacity drives Luke absolutely crazy with lust. From the first moment Luke lays eyes on Dani sparks fly and he is drawn to her like a moth to a flame. Dani feels it too and when she tries to escape to her storeroom the last thing she expects to find is Luke standing behind her. Passionate kisses erupt as the two attack each other.

I am excited
Dec 08, 2014 rated it it was amazing
With 115 5 Star reviews and only 1 – 1 star review on Amazon; the crowd has the right idea about this novel. I know i have already raved on about the prequel but this first book of the series was also equally tasty. The intimate scenes aren’t raunchy but have enough spice to make it interesting. The only thing I was skeptical about was, because I am a cynic, the pure devotion and absolutely patience that came from Luke. I mean wowza! A little unrealistic for me and its simply because I believe i ...more
Jan 30, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: did-not-finish
DNF at 82%

I loved the prequel, but this novel was no where in the same league as it. It had weird transitions and scenes that seemed like they were half done and never carried out thoroughly which left me feeling so frustrated to never see what the other character's reactions were. The emotions were all over the place and I felt no connection to the side characters as well. It was just boring Insta Love between Quinn and Rylan and I have no idea what drew them to be attracted to each other in th
Kelly Willcoxbrackeen
3.5 stars

I liked this story but it contained its share of weak points. First I'll give you the positive points. I love the male lead character, Luke. I found it quite refreshing that he was strong, honest, not afraid of his feelings or to localize them. Put simply, he knew what he wanted and asked for it. There is no beating around the bush with this character. I also loved Quinn, Xoey, the band, and Luke's parents. I love how the author portrays the gay character and that relationship as well.
Jun 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this story and especially liked the 'duelling businesses' as a different angle.

Pros: All the characters were written in a likeable manner - almost TOO likeable but I let that slide. I enjoyed reading about Chocolate and beer especially since I'm on a diet and couldn't actually have any, so reading about it was the next best thing.
Easy, enjoyable writing style.

Cons: I found my interest waning a little in the middle, second half until the emotional reveals. I think some of the beer manu
Bette Stanek
Jun 26, 2016 rated it liked it
Probably 3.5 stars. There's a lot going on in this one. It also includes the prequel to Love, Chocolate, and Beer. Cute and quick, this book is entertaining when you're looking for a brain candy read.

Dani is all about beer. Beer brewing, beer recipes, and serving beer. It's a family tradition. Dani has taken over the family's brew pub as brewmaster and owner. She's brought the pub back from near failure, but then since it was due to her mistake it's only right that she's the one who brought it
Karen Hrdlicka
Feb 03, 2014 rated it really liked it
I am a huge Violet Duke fan. This is a great start to a new series from her. I love the characters and the role reversal. No one would think a woman as a brew master and a man as a chocolatier. Luke and Dani are likeable and fun. Their chemistry is undeniable, even though Dani is sure that romantic love is just a myth. The secondary characters add a lot to the story line. Xoey is hilarious. Quinn and Rylan make a nice pairing to compliment Dani and Luke. Both of the main characters come with bag ...more
Jun 14, 2016 rated it liked it
This is the first booked I've picked up by this author as the synopsis grabbed my attention. I expected something different I think??
While I found the book to be ok it certainly didn't wow me and I felt I had to force myself to read it!
This book felt really slow to me and felt like it dragged on a bit.
A lot throughout the book I felt like I was taking a class on how to make chocolate or beer! I appreciate a thoroughly researched book and can understand why (as people complain the info wrong) bu
Heather andrews
Jan 28, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Luke is a real charmer, "I went from thinking 'pants on fire' to thinking about your pants." His voice graveled, heated for a second as if teased by his own words. "Then, well, you can follow the breadcrumbs." When talking about his 'member' he calls is soldier and I always cracked up about that, "honey, if we had, the trench barricade my soldier is failing to hide behind wouldn't be taller than yours right now." He sometimes does the right thing, but Dani makes it hard, "you're not thinking cle ...more
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NEW YORK TIMES & USA TODAY bestselling author Violet Duke is a former professor of English Education ecstatic to be on the other side of the page now writing emotion-rich stories with fun, everyday characters and sweet, sexy match-ups. Since her debut series in 2013, over a million readers have put all four of Violet's laugh & cry contemporary romance series on bestseller lists and Top 10 charts a ...more

Other books in the series

Cactus Creek (6 books)
  • Love, Diamonds, and Spades (Cactus Creek, #2)
  • Love, Tussles, and Takedowns (Cactus Creek, #3)
  • Love, Exes, and Ohs (Cactus Creek, #4)
  • Love, Sidelines, and Endzones (Cactus Creek, #5)
  • Untitled Cactus Creek Book 6 (Cactus Creek, #6)

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